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NEVADA CPA EXAM & LICENSE REQUIREMENTS 2021
Nevada asks applicants to the Nevada CPA to pass standards for education, examinations and experience.
If you are an accountant, or are studying to become one, you have likely heard of the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) license. That is the top license available to those who practice accountancy. To attain the certification, you need to undergo rigorous academic training and pass both the CPA and the Ethics exam. Each state has specific criteria for CPA licensure, so it is best to know which state you intend to practice in while you work on your undergraduate degree. You can also discuss the standards with your advisor. Keep reading to learn how to become a CPA in Nevada.
Nevada, like many other states, asks applicants to the Nevada State Board of Accountancy to pass standards for education, examinations and experience. You must have 150 semester hours of academic work, two years of work experience, passing scores on the American Institute of Certified Public Accountant CPA Exam, and a passing score on the AICPA’s Ethics Exam. You must also be a resident of Nevada, have a Social Security number and be current with all application fees and deadlines.
Many states require 150 semester hours for the CPA application, but allow applicants to sit for the CPA exam with only 120 hours. Nevada requires that applicants wait until they have completed the 150 hour requirement before sitting for the exam. Along the way to completing your semester hours, the state needs to see specific coursework on your transcripts.
30 semester hours of accounting courses above the introductory level, including the following:
- Nine hours of financial accounting
- Three hours of cost accounting
- Three hours of Federal income tax
- 12 hours of electives in Accounting
24 semester hours in business-administration courses:
- Organizational behavior
- Business Law
- Business Communication
- Information Systems
- Data Processing
- Macro and/or Micro Economics
- Business Ethics
- Legal and Social Environment
Nevada will accept credits from any regionally accredited institution, including CLEPs, online and community colleges. If these credits will transfer to a four-year institution, then the board will accept them. The board recognizes schools that have been accredited by the following regional agencies:
- Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges
- Western Association of Schools and Colleges
- New England Association of Schools and Colleges
- Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
- Southern Association of Colleges and Schools
- Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools
Along the way to your 150 hours, you will likely matriculate with a bachelor’s degree. From there, it is recommended that you continue on to graduate school. More and more, a master’s degree, such as the Master of Accountancy, is becoming the norm. If you choose an MBA program, however, make sure that you will still be able to satisfy the board’s requirements for sitting the CPA exam.
When you send your transcripts to the board, be sure to have them sent from every institution you have attended. Even if the credits transferred and are reflected on documents from your alma mater, the board will need to see original documentation from all institutions. Make sure that all envelopes are sealed and that you specify original transcripts when ordering them.
The board will review your documents and then will notify the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) with an Authorization to Test (ATT). In turn, NASBA will send you a payment coupon. One you have this coupon, you will have six months to remit your fees whereupon NASBA will send you a Notice to Schedule (NTS). You will have six months from receipt of the NTS to schedule your first exam. Contact your preferred Prometric site to set up an appointment to sit for the CPA exam. There are two Prometric sites in Nevada: one in Reno and the other in Las Vegas.
The CPA exam is a very difficult 4-part test that is considered among the hardest of all the professional examinations. In fact, many must retake parts, if not all of the test before passing. Take as much time as you need to study for each part. There are many online study guides, and you might wish to form a study group for reviewing all of the details covered in the examination. Each part must be passed with a score of 75. The four parts of the exam are as follows:
- Financial Accounting and Reporting–This covers financial reporting frameworks from several industry experts. Candidates are asked to compare statements that reflect different reporting standards.
- Auditing and Attestation–This part tests your knowledge of the International Standards of Auditing as well as U.S. standards.
- Regulation–Your professional and legal responsibilities are covered in this section.
- Business Environment and Concepts–This portion covers general business concepts and international business, and you’ll need to use your best written communication skills to complete much of the test.
Once you have passed the CPA exam, you will need to take an 11-hour self-study course in ethics provided by the AICPA. This course prepares you for an open-book exam that is much easier than the CPA exam but which must be passed with a minimum score of 90.
The final hurdle to your CPA license is the experience portion. Nevada requires that you work for two years (or around 4,000 hours) working in public accounting; four years (or around 8,000 hours) working as a governmental auditor or otherwise doing internal audits; or four years in either category where you worked independently of a licensed CPA. The specific requirements are as follows
Public Accountancy Experience
Demonstrate Competency in the following tasks:
- Preparing tax documents and providing tax advice
- Management Consultation
Complete 1,000 hours in attestation, 700 of which performing audits. Once you have met the requirements, report your experience using Nevada’s Public Accounting Experience form.
Non-Public or Governmental Experience
Complete the educational requirements for each individual governmental agency. Report your experience on the Non-Public Accounting Experience Form.
Nevada’s requirements are very specific, so make sure that you review them carefully. Use their website to help guide you and your advisor through your education: Nevada State Board of Accountancy.